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My gear list

Each and every hiker seems to have his gear list available in the Internet, so here is my 0.02 Euros... By comparing, adding together, and editing these you will get your own gear list. This list below is my version.

My backpack weighs about 20 to 30 kilograms, depending on the length of the trip. It could be lighter, but that is something I can quite comfortably carry, so there is no need to drop my little luxury items.

Those luxury items of mine are, amongst others, two persons tent for myself only, good sleeping mattress, and a bit heavy but warm sleeping bag. In addition to that, I have been using a bit too much gasoline by simmering food, and keeping tea water hot. A real extreme guy will easily take two kilos our of the list below. Not me.

With this gear you can stay one week in the wilderness. In longer hike one would need to wash clothes, because you can not carry more, and in shorter hike you can leave out something. With clothing you need to be careful... in July, in Finnish Lapland, you can have freezing rain. You may need autumn clothing even in summertime. At least warm underwear and warm fleece jacket is needed for the mid layer. Some things you will learn from first experience (mistake).

Camping etc.

  • Backpack
  • Tent
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping mattress
  • Hiking pole (I feel one is enough, and leaves your other hand free)

Clothing (in summer, in Finnish Lapland)

  • Hiking jacket and pants (shell layer)
  • Hat
  • Hiking boots
  • Rain cape
  • Rain legs (just the legs of rain pants)
  • Rain cover for the backpack
  • Coverboots
  • Fleece jacket
  • A couple of T-shirts (synthetic sports underwear)
  • A couple of pairs of hiking socks
  • A couple of pairs of liner socks to be used with the socks above
  • A couple of sports underwear
  • Microfleece underwear (mid layer)
  • T-shirt for sleeping (may be cotton)
  • Underwear for sleeping (may be cotton)
  • Socks for sleeping (may be cotton)
  • Gloves
  • Scarf
  • Warm cap
  • Napkins (cotton)
  • Sandals or training shoes
  • Return clothing (T-shirt, underwear, socks etc. depending on the time of the year. Normally I have bought a souvenir T-shirt from Lapland :o)

Cooking and eating

  • Stove
  • Fuel (MSR Dragonfly uses about one desiliter of gasoline in my use, in a day, when not boiling drinking water)
  • Kettles
  • Water cleaner
  • A mug (Snow Peak's titan thermo mug is light and keeps coffee warm when you make the coffee at the same time with Reiter food. It was awfully expensive, but I had to buy that nerd thing after listening too long for Namesake-Jussi's stories about the traditional wooden "kuksa" mugs. :o)
  • Plate
  • Knife
  • Spoon
  • Sharp knife
  • Water bottle (0.6 liter SIGG bottle has been enough when using water cleaner, even in Southern Finland)
  • Whisk
  • (Can opener)
  • Coffee measure
  • Coffee filter holder (using coffee filter you can save weight, half a kilo of coffee is more than enough for one week when filtering it)
  • Paper coffee filters
  • Desiliter measure
  • Washing sponge
  • Wettex cloth

Food, for each day

I guess this is the most personal area. I have not made any coulinar specialties, just something good and easy. In summer 2005 I rearranged my eating habits: Lunch is quick and easy, Reiter add-only-hot-water type of meal, crisp bread and coffee. Dinner is late in the evening at the camp site, and that is much bigger meal of someting I can easily cook in one kettle.

I have dried minced meat. You need to have good quality minced meat with only some percent of fat. In Tampere you can find such at Prisma Kaleva, or at Stockmann. The safety gas packages are not good enough, at least in my experience. Fry the meat with low heat, "boiling", so that you get the moisture out of the meat. Try to get the meat into as small pieces as possible on the fying pan. Add salt and pepper, because the meat does not get much taste from the other food when used and tastes like cardboard otherwise. Fry slowly into small dry pieces. Spread on owen baking tray, and dry in 50° centigrade for 24 hours. Half a kilo on one tray only. Use a wooden spatula to keep the owen door a bit open. Move the drying meat after some hours (you can sleep and go to work, it is not that important). After 24 hours it is hard and dry, and light! If you have two half a kilo sets in the oven at the same time, drying may take longer. Dried meat can be stored quite well, but I stored mine in fridge, in minigrip bag, until I need to pack it. Good meat has low enough fat for not to form a solid block in fridge.

For dinner I have had amongs others

  • Half a bag of Blå Band dried casserole ingredients, add some dried minced meat, one desiliter of macaroni, and water more than advised in the bag. Tasty casserole. Throw in the dried meat already in the cold water, so it can soften long enough. You need to simmer for about 20 minutes.
  • Burrito sauce from ingredients bag (Santa Maria Fajitas is my favourite), but you need to add some chili. Half a bag for one person. Add minced meat in the beginning, and one tube of tomato pyree. Add water as needed. Burrito bread from package. Enough for one (4 breads, next four next evening).
  • Meat balls and potato hash. Meatballs from a can and potato hash from a bag. Felix is the best one. If you have the can alone, it is quite a big set, because there is no small cans. :O)
  • Pea soup. This was a first evening classic for some time, the can is quite heavy. Jalostaja is my personal favourite.
  • Reiter's add-only-water food for lunch. You need to stir occasionally, but it is ready in five minutes, in the packing bag. Very quick but quite small. "Enough" salt. Good for a quick lunch though. When you add the boiling water, you can filter coffee too at the same time, into the thermos mug. Really quick!

In addition to that, for each day:

  • Oatmeal porridge for the morning (2 desiliter of grits)
  • Crisp bread, less than 100g for a day
  • Cheese spread (Koskenlaskija is the traditional one in Finland) 50g for a day
  • Baloney in vacuum package, sliced (of good quality, the best in Finland is "Lybeck baloney" of Wigren) 50g for a day
  • Coffee, about 50g for a day
  • Tea bag for the evening
  • Sugar cubes
  • A couple of sweet crackers
  • ...or Cream Crackers and marmelade
  • ...or bisquits
  • Energy bar
  • Sports drink
  • Chocolate 50g
  • Nut-raisin mixture 50g

All in all, the daily food weighs about 700 to 800 grams. In addition to that, you need to have one spare day's food, just to be on the safe side. One weeks menu weighs then about six kilograms. You can stay alive with less, but even with this amount of food I lose normally a couple of kilograms. You consume quite a lot of energy with a backpack.

Gear and stuff

  • Camera, memory, batteries, small tripod, camera bag
  • Binoculars
  • GPS, spare batteries (Garmin Etrex of mine uses a set of two cells in two days, that makes one cell a day (you need to round up to even number of course :O))
  • Compass
  • (Head light if needed)
  • Maps and photocopies
  • (Tickets and time tables)
  • Cell phone and a couple of spare batteries (Nokia 9500)
  • Pulse meter
  • Mosquito repellent (Off)
  • Matches and lighter
  • Kitchen paper (can be used as toilet paper too)
  • Thermometer
  • Mosquito hat
  • Minigrip bags
  • A couple of extra plastic bags

Repair kit

  • Repair kit for the stove
  • Spare binding strings
  • Duct tape
  • Mending kit
  • "One drop glue" (you know that one-drop-fixes-anything-in-second type of stuff)
  • Good contact glue (you know that put-on-both-surfaces-wait-and-press-together type of stuff)
  • Extra set of lithium cells for GPS (very light, storable, expensive and last for days)


  • Tooth brush and paste
  • Piece of soap
  • Some shampoo
  • Some hair conditioner
  • Cotton swabs
  • Deodorant
  • Hair brush
  • Towel
  • Nail scissors
  • Mirror


  • Ibusal (ibuprofein)
  • Snake bite set (there is one semi-lethal snake in Scandinavia, this is cortison taken orally)
  • Multivitamin pills
  • Vitamin C pills
  • Plaster
  • "Artificial skin" type of plaster
  • Salve, for example Lipolan
  • Lip salve
  • (Sun protection lotion)
  • Personal medication, if any

Copyright © Jussi Ristilä 2004 - 2008. Last update 10-Aug-2008.